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Call for papers: The Twenty-Second Annual symposium on conflict resolution


 For the Twenty-Second Annual


Centre for Conflict Education and Research at Carleton University, Carleton University
Faculty of Law, Common Law Section, University of Ottawa
Conflict Research Centre, Saint Paul University



Internationally Renowned Identity Theorist, and Meehan Professor of Adult
Learning and Professional Development at Harvard University 

                                Thursday, January 31, 2013, 6:30pm, Saint Paul University

Concurrent Sessions and Final Plenary:

Friday, February 1, 2013
8:30 a.m. - 5.00 p.m.
The R.A. Centre, 2451 Riverside Drive
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada


                                              This year’s Symposium Theme is: 


             This year’s themes are concerned with the manner in which issues of identity, consciousness and meaning-making impact on the conflict resolution process. We know that un-met identity needs often play a significant role in conflict, from the most intimate interpersonal conflicts, to large scale inter-ethnic or inter-group conflicts. And yet, how deeply do we really understand the relationship between identity and conflict? Why is one person’s identity and need for recognition so different from another’s?; and how does this impact the conflict resolution or mediation process?

             Likewise, we know from experience that parties to a conflict often have different interpretations of the causes and consequences of the conflicts they are engaged in, and may even place different interpretations on the same facts. What role does consciousness or identity play in the way parties filter information about their conflict? As conflict interveners, how far is our own practice shaped by our consciousness or identity? How can we know what a conflict means to others? How do we intervene when we think the conflict is about something different from what the parties themselves say?

             We encourage contributions exploring the themes of conflict, consciousness, identity, and meaning-making across the whole spectrum of dispute resolution practices from mediation of interpersonal and small group conflicts, to multi-stage negotiation or peace making processes involving international or large scale inter-group conflicts.  Please indicate on your abstract whether your paper will be addressing issues of theory or best practices.

             As is our practice each year, concurrent streams distinct from our main theme are also held, thus submissions for papers on topics outside the symposium theme are also welcome.

              In order to qualify, a paper must address a research practice /theory question and offer original insights. Abstracts should be approximately 200 words in length and include a title, your name, institutional affiliation (if any), and contact information. No more than one abstract per person will be accepted. Abstracts will be evaluated on their relevance to conflict resolution, conceptual framework, quality of methods used and originality. Presenters will be on a panel with others so speaking time is limited to 20 minutes. Regrettably, no travel or accommodation bursaries are available for presenters. Depending on the number of papers received, there will be panels in French and English. (Participant should indicate in their abstract if they prefer to present in French, English, or both).

The deadline for submission of abstracts is November 1rst, 2012. Abstracts should be submitted by email to:                          

Emilie Simonet, Conflict Research Centre, Saint Paul University, crsymposium@ustpaul.ca

If you have any questions, please contact us by email.





             In conjunction with this year’s symposium theme and the keynote address by Professor Kegan, on the two days prior to the Symposium (January 30 and 31) there will be a two-day professional development workshop sponsored by Saint Paul Conflict Research Centre, the Centre for Conflict Education and Research at Carleton University, and the Faculty of Law, Common Law Section, University of Ottawa. The workshop is offered to CR practitioners interested in Dr. Robert Kegan’s constitutive developmental theory of psychological development, and linking the application of CD theory and the SUBJECT-OBJECT Interview (SOI) to conflict engagement and mediation.

             The SUBJECT/OBJECT INTERVIEW(SOI) is a semi-structured, open-ended interview designed to draw out the ways in which a person makes meaning out of his or her experience. The Interview was designed by Dr. Robert Kegan and colleagues at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. In his work, Kegan identifies meaning-making as the “fundamental motion of human being”, and describes a continuum of meaning-making complexity or ‘structure’, marked by identifiable milestones, from birth through adulthood. Understanding another’s meaning-making process and complexity is a powerful tool in being able to work together more harmoniously in all of our professional and personal pursuits.

             The workshop will be a highly participatory, interactive experience focusing on administering and interpreting the SOI, and will be led by Dr. Richard McGuigan, Chair of the Conflict Studies Department at Antioch University, and Dr.Nancy Popp, the most experienced administrator and interpreter of the SUBJECT/ OBJECT INTERVIEW in the world today.

             The workshop will pay particular attention to the important distinctions in Constitutive Development theory between informational and transformational learning, between the content and structure of meaning making, and between meaning-making and behaviour in conflict.

             Registration for the Pre-symposium workshop is limited to 20 persons, and is separate from registration for the Symposium. The workshop will be held at St. Paul University. For registration information about the workshop, contact Emilie Simonet at



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